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INTRODUCTORY   ESSAY.                                199
The two groups of provinces of the Western Himalaya we
propose are:—
First Group:                                    Second Group,
1.  Kuraaon,            8. Kunawar (north of Simla).
2.  Garhwal.             9. Lahul (north of Kulu).
3.  Simla.               10. Kishtwar (north of Chamba
4.  Kulu.                         and Jamu).
5.  Chamba.           11. Kashmir (north of Raj aori),
6.  Jamu.               12. Marri (between the Jelam
7.  Eajaori.                      and Indus).
The observations we have to offer upon the vegetation of
these are very fragmentary, as the majority of the natural
orders have still to be worked out; we shall however endea-
vour, after describing the physical features of each, to give as
many examples as we can of the peculiarities of their floras,
as will show the importance of the stxidy and the means of
prosecuting it. Their complete elucidation must be left for
local botanists.
Kumaon, as at .present limited, is bounded on the east by
the Kali, separating it from Nipal; on the west by the.Alak-
nanda branch of the Ganges, and its western feeder, the
Mandakni; on the north by the axis of the Cis-Satlej Hima-
laya, and on the south by: the. upper Gangetic plain. The
elevation of the Terai at its base varies from 600 to 1000
feet; the mountains of the outer ranges rise to 7000 in many
places^ and in the interior attain 10,000, while .still further
north many rise labove 20,000, and a few above 24,000 feet.
The Joftiest, as elsewhere in the Himalaya, axe never on the
aXi£ of the chain, which is still further north, and whose great
mean elevation may be judged of from that of the passes over
it. Of these, proceeding from the eastward, the Lankpya
Pass is 18,000 feet, the Lakhur 18,400, the Balch 17,700,
the Niti 16,800, and the Mana 18,760. Almora, the capital